Trash, tracks, & dinosaurs

How production company New Trash combines their DIY love with a filming edge

Written by Justin Eulalio

Music video production company New Trash filming on set for Chicago-based band Woongi. Photo courtesy of New Trash. 

Music video production company New Trash filming on set for Chicago-based band Woongi. Photo courtesy of New Trash. 

New Trash is the music video production child of recent Columbia College graduates Nat Alder and Connor Wiles. Founded over the summer of 2016, New Trash has already produced ten videos — collaborating with local Chicago musicians like mtvghosts, The Peekaboos and now Woongi. And collaboration really is the main component of what keeps New Trash constantly working.


From the production crews that make the shoots a reality to the musicians featured in the videos, New Trash heavily emphasizes how important it is to get together and create for the sake of making something you love.


“We know people are more open when you approach it as exchanging art for art to create something,” said Wiles.


“It tends to build a nice relationship with the bands too, with them knowing we’re not trying to skim them,” Alder added. "We’re just there to make fun shit with them.”

But with New Trash, “fun shit” may be an understatement. Watching their videos, I can’t help but be captivated by their wacky antics while also being attracted to the polished finish and touch that seems to be present in every clip.


New Trash’s work varies, yet stays familiar to itself. In one video you’ll see Hitler’s head get bashed with a guitar, and then explode in high definition. Then they’ll turn around and make a 480i VHS tape of two people on the run fighting with dildos. And, because that isn’t enough for them, they’ll add Jesus into the mix of getting slapped with the rubber dicks.


What seems to be the real surprise to me, though, is that every video is shot all in a day’s time. According to New Trash, that is out of necessity more than preference. With their incredibly low budget, on top of filming all of the videos for free, they seem to not have the proper resources to extend a shoot. But this desperation has definitely played in their favor.


“Because we shoot on such a low budget and a quick schedule, that sort of defines our esthetic,” said Alder.


Behind the hectic shoots and the fast-paced video turn out, Alder and Wiles take diligent time prepping and planning so the can accomplish their vision within a day. Just how much planning does it take though? It’s complicated.


“Anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months,” said Alder. “We’ve had shoots that we’ve been planning for a year, and then there are shoots that we get before the date that we sort of have to rush.”


“In terms of hours, I couldn’t even quantify it, because this is our life,” Wiles followed. “So I feel like...okay for example, today we finished post for one video, we’re prepping a shoot that we have July 2nd for a video with Post Child, and then we just did a cold call reach out to a rapper, and his manager just got back to us and we locked a meeting for Monday.”


And it is that constant juggling that keeps both Alder and Wiles on their toes and so well prepared. Their latest video, "Coins" by Woongi, couldn’t have been possible if not for the quick wit of both directors.

Wiles and Alder inform me that the concept of the video, a “Purple Dinosaur (and not a trademarked kids’ show character, just a Purple Dinosaur)” being hunted by kids in a Lord of the Flies style, was an idea from day one of forming New Trash. But it wasn’t until Woongi released their latest album, Music for Prophet, and Wiles heard “Coins” that they were ready to go into production.


Acquiring the kids to hunt the Purple Dinosaur actually turned out to be the easy part, thanks to a family connection. The difficulty came with the unexpected rain and a shoot planned primarily outside.


New Trash proves to be able to overcome and strive from these sorts of dilemmas, and the outcome of it all mends better than anticipated.


Watch New Trash’s video for “Coins” by Woongi here: 

Check out the behind-the-scenes production of the video here: 

New Trash will host a show Friday, July 7th at The Auxiliary Art Center with: mtvghosts, Woongi, The Cartoons, and The Peekaboos.

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